Essential Online Marketing Terms for a Strong Digital Presence

Online marketing, also known as digital marketing, is the process of promoting products, services, or brands through digital channels, such as search engines, social media, email, and websites.

In this glossary, we will define and explain some of the most common online marketing terms that you need to know.

A/B Testing

A/B testing is the process of comparing two versions of a web page, email, or other digital asset to see which one performs better.

By creating two variations and randomly showing them to different groups of users, marketers can analyze which version drives more engagement or conversions.


AdWords is Google’s advertising platform that allows marketers to create and display text, image, and video ads on the search engine results page, as well as on Google’s partner websites.

Advertisers bid on keywords and pay-per-click (PPC) when users click on their ads.

Affiliate Marketing

Affiliate marketing is a performance-based marketing model where affiliates earn a commission by promoting other companies’ products or services.

Affiliates can promote products through their websites, social media, email marketing, or other channels. When a user clicks on an affiliate link and completes a purchase, the affiliate earns a commission.


Analytics refers to the collection, measurement, analysis, and reporting of data related to website or app usage.

By using analytics tools, marketers can track user behavior, identify trends, and optimize their online marketing campaigns.

B2B Marketing

B2B marketing is the process of promoting products or services to other businesses.

B2B marketers typically use different tactics than B2C marketers, as they are targeting a different audience with different needs and preferences.

B2C Marketing

B2C marketing is the process of promoting products or services to consumers.

B2C marketers often focus on emotional appeal, convenience, and brand awareness to capture consumers’ attention and drive sales.

Bounce Rate

Bounce rate refers to the percentage of visitors who leave a website after viewing only one page.

A high bounce rate may indicate that visitors did not find what they were looking for or that the website has usability issues.

Call-to-Action (CTA)

A call-to-action is a phrase or button that prompts users to take a specific action, such as “sign up,” “subscribe,” “buy now,” or “learn more.”

CTAs are crucial to online marketing because they guide users towards a desired conversion or goal.

Click-Through Rate (CTR)

Click-through rate is the percentage of users who click on a specific link, ad, or CTA out of the total number of users who saw it.

CTR is used to measure the effectiveness of online advertising campaigns and can help marketers optimize their ads for better performance.


A conversion is a desired action that a user takes on a website or app, such as making a purchase, filling out a form, or subscribing to a newsletter.

Conversions are important because they indicate that a user has engaged with a brand and taken a step towards becoming a customer.

Cost-per-Click (CPC)

Cost-per-click is the amount of money that an advertiser pays every time a user clicks on their ad.

CPC is used in PPC advertising models and can vary based on the keyword, competition, and ad placement.

Cost-per-Impression (CPM)

Cost-per-impression is the amount of money that an advertiser pays every time their ad is displayed to a user, regardless of whether the user clicks on it or not.

CPM is used in display advertising models and can vary based on the ad format, audience, and ad placement.

Customer Acquisition Cost (CAC)

Customer acquisition cost is the amount of money that a business spends on acquiring a new customer.

CAC includes all marketing and sales expenses, such as advertising, content creation, sales commissions, and customer support.

By calculating CAC, businesses can determine the cost-effectiveness of their marketing campaigns and adjust their strategies accordingly.

Customer Relationship Management (CRM)

Customer relationship management is a strategy and software system that businesses use to manage their interactions with customers and potential customers.

CRM helps businesses organize customer data, track customer interactions, and improve customer engagement and retention.

Digital Marketing

Digital marketing refers to all marketing activities that use digital channels, such as search engines, social media, email, and websites, to promote products, services, or brands.

Digital marketing is a broad term that encompasses various tactics and strategies, including SEO, PPC, content marketing, email marketing, and social media marketing.


eCommerce, or electronic commerce, refers to buying and selling products or services online through a website or mobile app.

eCommerce can include various models, such as business-to-consumer (B2C), business-to-business (B2B), or consumer-to-consumer (C2C), and can be used by businesses of all sizes to reach a global customer base.

Email Marketing

Email marketing is the process of sending commercial messages to a group of people via email.

Email marketing can be used to promote products, services, events, or content, as well as to nurture customer relationships and drive engagement.


Engagement refers to the level of interaction that users have with a brand’s online content, such as social media posts, emails, or blog articles.

Engagement metrics can include likes, shares, comments, clicks, or time spent on a website. High engagement indicates that users are interested in a brand’s content and may be more likely to convert.


Gamification is the process of using game design elements, such as challenges, rewards, or leaderboards, in non-game contexts, such as marketing or employee training.

Gamification can be used to increase engagement, motivation, and learning, and can be applied in various industries and fields.

Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a free web analytics service offered by Google that tracks and reports website traffic and user behavior.

Google Analytics provides insights on user demographics, traffic sources, engagement metrics, and conversion rates, among other data points.

Inbound Marketing

Inbound marketing is a marketing strategy that focuses on attracting potential customers to a brand’s website or content through valuable and relevant information.

Inbound marketing tactics can include content marketing, SEO, social media, and email marketing.

Influencer Marketing

Influencer marketing is a type of social media marketing that uses endorsements and product mentions from influential people or celebrities to promote a brand or product.

Influencer marketing can be effective in reaching niche audiences and increasing brand awareness and credibility, but requires careful selection of influencers and measurement of ROI.


A keyword is a word or phrase that users type into a search engine to find information related to a specific topic or question.

Keywords are important in SEO and PPC advertising, as they help businesses target their content and ads to the right audience.


KPI, or key performance indicator, is a measurable metric that businesses use to track and evaluate their progress towards specific goals or objectives.

KPIs can vary depending on the business and industry, but can include metrics such as website traffic, conversion rate, customer retention, or revenue growth.

Landing Page

A landing page is a web page that users land on after clicking on a link or ad.

Landing pages are designed to encourage a specific action, such as filling out a form or making a purchase, and are often used in online advertising campaigns.


A lead is a potential customer who has expressed interest in a product or service by providing their contact information, such as their email address or phone number.

Leads can be generated through various marketing channels, such as website forms, email sign-ups, or social media ads.

Marketing Automation

Marketing automation is the use of software and technology to automate repetitive marketing tasks, such as email campaigns, lead generation, or social media scheduling.

Marketing automation can help businesses save time and resources, increase efficiency and consistency, and improve customer engagement and conversion rates.

Mobile Marketing

Mobile marketing is a marketing strategy that targets users on their mobile devices, such as smartphones or tablets.

Mobile marketing tactics can include mobile-friendly website design, mobile apps, SMS marketing, or location-based marketing.

Niche Marketing

Niche marketing is a marketing strategy that focuses on a specific, narrow customer segment or niche market, rather than trying to appeal to a broad audience.

Niche marketing can be effective in reaching highly engaged and loyal customers, and can be used to differentiate a brand from competitors and build a strong brand identity.

Organic Traffic

Organic traffic refers to website traffic that comes from unpaid or natural search engine results, as opposed to paid or sponsored results.

Organic traffic is important in SEO and content marketing, as it indicates that users are finding and engaging with a brand’s content through search engines.

Pay-per-Click (PPC)

Pay-per-click is an advertising model where advertisers pay every time a user clicks on their ad.

PPC ads can be displayed on search engine results pages, social media platforms, or other websites, and can be targeted to specific audiences based on keywords, demographics, or interests.


Retargeting is a digital advertising technique that targets users who have previously interacted with a brand’s website or content.

By using cookies or other tracking technologies, retargeting ads can be shown to users across different websites or social media platforms, reminding them of the brand and encouraging them to complete a desired action.


ROI, or return on investment, is a measure of the profit or value generated by a marketing campaign or investment, relative to the cost of that investment.

ROI can be calculated by dividing the profit or value gained by the cost of the investment, and is used to evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of marketing efforts.

Search Engine Marketing (SEM)

Search engine marketing is a type of digital marketing that involves promoting a website through paid advertising on search engine results pages (SERPs), such as Google Ads or Bing Ads.

SEM can help businesses increase visibility and traffic to their website, and can be effective in targeting specific keywords and audiences.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Search engine optimization is the process of improving a website’s visibility and ranking in search engine results pages (SERPs) through various tactics, such as optimizing content, using relevant keywords, improving website structure and design, and building backlinks.

SEO can help businesses increase organic traffic, build brand awareness and credibility, and generate leads and sales.

Social Media Marketing

Social media marketing is the process of using social media platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, to promote a product, service, or brand.

Social media marketing can include creating and sharing content, engaging with followers, running social media ads, and measuring and analyzing social media metrics.

Target Audience

A target audience is a specific group of people that a brand aims to reach with its marketing message or product.

Target audiences can be defined based on demographic, geographic, psychographic, or behavioral factors, and can be used to tailor marketing efforts and messaging to specific customer segments.

Unique Selling Proposition (USP)

A unique selling proposition is a factor that sets a product or service apart from its competitors and makes it unique and desirable to customers.

A USP can be based on product features, customer benefits, pricing, or positioning, and is often used in marketing messaging and advertising campaigns.

User Experience (UX)

User experience refers to the overall experience and satisfaction that users have when interacting with a website or product.

UX encompasses various aspects, such as usability, accessibility, aesthetics, functionality, and emotional engagement, and is critical in creating a positive and effective user experience that meets user needs and expectations.

Value Proposition

A value proposition is a statement that describes the unique value or benefit that a product or service provides to customers.

A value proposition can be based on customer needs or pain points, and should clearly communicate how the product or service solves those problems and creates value for customers.

Video Marketing

Video marketing is a type of marketing that involves creating and sharing video content, such as product demos, tutorials, testimonials, or ads, to promote a brand or product.

Video marketing can be effective in increasing engagement, brand awareness, and conversion rates, and can be used on various platforms, such as social media, websites, or email campaigns.

Web Analytics

Web analytics is the process of measuring and analyzing website traffic and user behavior.

Web analytics can provide insights on user demographics, traffic sources, engagement metrics, and conversion rates, and can be used to optimize website design, content, and marketing strategies.


A webinar is a live or pre-recorded online seminar or presentation that is delivered over the internet.

Webinars can be used for various purposes, such as lead generation, product demos, customer education, or thought leadership, and can be interactive and engaging through features such as Q&A sessions, polls, or chat rooms.

XML Sitemap

An XML sitemap is a file that lists all the pages of a website and their relationships to each other, and is used by search engines to crawl and index the website’s content.

XML sitemaps can help improve website visibility and ranking in search engine results pages (SERPs), and can be created using various tools and plugins.

YouTube Marketing

YouTube marketing is a type of video marketing that involves creating and promoting video content on the YouTube platform, either through organic or paid methods.

YouTube marketing can be effective in reaching a large audience, building brand awareness and engagement, and generating leads and sales, and can include various types of content, such as product demos, tutorials, ads, or influencer collaborations.

Zero Moment of Truth (ZMOT)

The zero moment of truth is a term coined by Google that refers to the moment when a consumer researches a product or service online before making a purchase decision.

ZMOT emphasizes the importance of a strong online presence, content marketing, and user experience in influencing consumer behavior and winning the sale.


Online marketing is a vast and constantly evolving field that requires a solid understanding of various terms and concepts to effectively plan, execute, and measure marketing strategies.

This glossary provides an overview of some of the most important online marketing terms and concepts that businesses need to know to succeed in today’s digital landscape.

By mastering these terms and concepts, businesses can develop a comprehensive and effective online marketing plan that aligns with their goals and objectives, and effectively reaches and engages their target audience.

By Brian Bennett

Brian is a senior IT specialist, investor and owner of DataPacket. He writes about Internet advocacy, the Web hosting industry, security and news.

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